7 Apparel Trade Shows You Should Be Exhibiting At

By
Elizabeth Scolari
January 27, 2016

Fashion and apparel brands rely on a bevy of sales channels to reach the consumer. eCommerce and pop-up shops are new direct platforms, while trade shows indirectly introduce brands to the market. Indeed, trade shows have long offered fashion designers a unique opportunity to connect with retailers. Choosing the right apparel trade shows for your brand can be done based on a series of factors. The number of attendees and exhibitors the event attracts is undeniably an important consideration, as is the category of products on display. Here are some of the biggest trade events in the fashion and apparel industry for you to consider.

7 Apparel Trade Shows Your Brand Should Be Exhibiting At

1. MRket

MRket is a menswear event crawling with snazzy shirts and eye-catching cufflinks. Hosted by the BJI Fashion Group in both New York City and Las Vegas, MRket is a global fashion trade show with over 300 exhibitors representing the best collections in men’s clothing, sportswear, footwear and accessories. MRket is a professional event produced specifically for the fashion retail trade. As a result, the show is not open to the public, meaning all attendees at MRKet are qualified buyers looking to purchase the newest trends in men’s fashion. The show is bookended by two curated galleries, the Vanguards Gallery and Modern Prep, that showcase the newest names in luxury and casual menswear, respectively. In addition, MRket prides itself on being the only show in North America to spotlight international groups such as Made in Italy and UK Design, so international brands are particularly valued at the show.

2. OFFPRICE Show

OFFPRICE Show is a dynamic order-writing trade event for retail buyers and off-price specialists, featuring everything from brand name jeans and cashmere scarves to quality private label garments. Hosted by the Tarsus Group, OFFPRICE Show catered to 8,460 retailers in 2015, all looking for the latest trends and fashionable items to add to their stores. Again, as a product showcase for fashion wholesalers with discounted goods, this trade show is designed to encourage sales orders

3. Chicago Collective

Chicago Collective showcases over 300 exhibitors representing the finest brands in men’s classic and contemporary apparel, accessories, and footwear. Located in the renowned Merchandise Mart in the heart of downtown Chicago, the three-day trade show flaunts an upscale open booth format, imitating a loft-like environment. Chicago Collective targets independent specialty store buyers from across North America. For apparel and footwear brands looking to secure sales orders from Midwest retailers, Chicago Collective is a regional trade show that that still attracts the biggest, global names in fashion and apparel.

4. STITCH

STITCH is a trade show dedicated to focused and refined ready-to-wear designers. An elevated platform for contemporary fashion, STITCH organizes a juried and merchandised floor showcase with the right mix of sportswear, lifestyle, and international brands. Hosted by the BJI Fashion Group, STITCH is a biannual event--held in New York and Las Vegas--that presents a wide range of fashion iterations as the newest trends in travel wear, resort apparel, and professional attire are on full display. Like MRket, STITCH is only open to registered retailers and wholesale buyers, and many on the show floor have purchasing power.

5. Agenda

Agenda labels itself as the most diverse and creative lifestyle fashion trade show in the world. The show runners pride themselves on delivering a trade event that merges business and creativity in a tailored environment. Taking place in Miami, Long Beach, and Las Vegas, Agenda showcases over 1,000 exhibitors as buyers, brands, investors, distributors, and the media come from around the globe to build partnerships in the fashion community. Exhibitors at the trade show are diverse in scale, but Agenda makes great strides in ensuring that all brands are treated equally, so for emerging designers in fashion hoping to establish themselves in the retail space, Agenda Las Vegas is an appropriate trade event to put on the schedule.

6. Dallas Apparel & Accessories Market

Dallas Apparel & Accessories Market shows more of what’s next from leading manufacturers than any other marketplace in the U.S., featuring designs from classic looks to contemporary edge. Held three times a year at Dallas Market Center, the seasonal trade shows attract a combined 200,000 buyers per year. To be able to visit the Dallas Apparel & Accessories Market, attendees must be registered to sell merchandise similar to what is showcased on the trade show floor, ensuring quality buyers for exhibitors. The Dallas Apparel & Accessories Market also offers great marketing opportunities, as exhibitors can advertise their brand and products in the trade show’s magazine, directory, mobile app, and website.

7. FAME

FAME is the junior and young contemporary show where retailers can discover top trends from over 600 brands. FAME witnesses ample order writing and buying activity. Top fashion publications trying to forecast the newest trends in junior fashion also convene at the show. Located in New York City’s Javits Center, Fame showcases a variety of categories under youth fashion, including activewear, retro lines, and formalwear. Footwear also flourishes on the show floor, completing the season’s must-have looks in this one-stop shop environment. Like MRKet and STITCH, FAME is also a professionals-only event, ensuring a buyers’ market at the trade show. Even first-time exhibitors can achieve a successful trade show. If you are looking for fresh ideas, check out our posts on trade show preparation and marketing.